Google+ Authentic Parenting: No Means No

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

No Means No

We tell our girls that if they don't like something, they should say so. We teach our boys to accept 'no' for an answer. We keep repeating this in order to avoid them to be subjected to unwanted situations, to coercion, ultimately to rape.
But do we say the same through our actions?
How corrumpable are our parental no's?
How often do we let our children and our partners convince us out of a 'no'?

If your child wants to give you something, feed you something, you would rather not accept... Do you give in? If they insist, do you fold?

And let's turn the situation around. Do we - as parents - accept no for an answer? How often do we coerce our children into something WE want? How often do we sheme and manipulate to get the desired result?
Think about the little things, small frustrations, where we coerce just a little to get our way.

Getting them dressed or in the carseat, what means do you use? Having them take some medication.

As klong as we coerce our children nto doing what we want them too, coercion will be a part of our world. As long as we show our children through our action that insisting, manipulating and forcing works, they will continue this behavior.

No means no. Live by it.

Image: Informatique on Flickr



  1. The word does seem to exist. Not good English master?

  2. I am in total agreement. Sadly to most USians as far as I can tell they don't want to let go of hitting (calling it "spanking") and domination; let alone coercion.

    I feel like I have to find these tiny pockets of the inter-net to find those who share our views.

  3. It's difficult, because sometimes it is impossible to go without insisting or forcing. Having had a chronically ill child who needed to take medication, have all kinds of sticks and endure more medical hardship than any little one should have to endure, I felt horrible having to force him, in whatever way, to take his medicine or suffer through a procedure, but I knew that the alternative was to have his life endangered.

    So the way we handled it was that we respected the fact that the procedures and the medicine were unpleasant. We offered constant comfort whenever he needed it, no conditions. We advocated for him. We got to know what his preferences were, and he ended up being a cooperative patient and very sweet and charming to the medical personnel. He also still trusts us and goes to us for comfort, because I think he understood.

    As for little's a case-by-case thing. You have to consider how important it is to get done what you want or get somewhere at a certain time. Most of the time it's not that big of a deal to just let things roll.

  4. what do you intend it to mean?


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